For those of you unfamiliar with IVF in Israel, here is a brief description of the process. The procedure is done in private hospitals. The frozen sperm is kept in public hospitals. So the obvious question is how does it get from one hospital to the other? Well, this is Israel; and while I hear lots of olim (new immigrants) complain about the bureaucracy, having lived in the United States as well, it is not any more bureaucratic. BUT, here everything is always funnier, more charming and makes for wonderful anecdotes, but I digress. So, how do you transport frozen sperm? Well, in a thermos of course.
Let me digress again. I live in Central Tel Aviv, the equivalent to Manhattan. I don’t have a car because most everything I need is steps away and also, like in Manhattan, but even more complex, if that is possible, is the parking situation. One needs a special PH.D to decipher the parking signs and a direct line to Gd in order to find a parking spot.
Back to the issue at hand; one can go pick up their sperm by bus, bike, car, or taxi. Since my sperm was at a hospital 30 minutes away by car, and since I was saving all my shekels for supporting my future children, I opted to go by bus.
So, picture this: I go to the private hospital to check out my thermos. I leave an enormous check as a deposit, because they're afraid I might not return it… Yes, I am planning to put my coffee in this thermos after the sperm is delivered (?????!!!!). I get on a local bus to the intra-city bus to the public hospital where my sperm is ladled (yes, ladled) into my thermos. They don’t close the thermos tightly because of something to do with air pressure and the temperature of the sperm (never very clear to me). Now I go back to the bus stop to get the intra-city bus to the city bus to the hospital. The entire way back I'm thinking if the bus stops short and my not so tightly sealed thermos opens and out flies the sperm, not only will I have lost the money on my sperm, but will the hospital give me back the enormous deposit if the top goes rolling, and someone trips and falls, and is sperm slippery, and is the bus company liable, will my insurance pay for said slippage and is slippage anything like shrinkage and boy that’s pretty Freudian especially since I'm transporting sperm…
ANYWAY, I finally make it to the private hospital with no leakage, slippage, spillage or shrinkage; leave the sperm, get my check back and carry on.
This happened four times. On the fifth try, my friend Gila, who had just gotten a new job and a new car befitting her new position, offered to drive me. She had cute little quips the whole way there and back which were pretty gross and inappropriate but had me giggling nonetheless and wondering if I was really meant to be a mom. Needless to say, there was no spillage or shrinkage and in fact, two little miracles came from it.
I have been studying to become a life coach. One of the principals is win-win. If a relationship isn’t win-win, both sides are not getting a relatively equal degree of benefit from it. This is a win-lose or even a lose-lose relationship and is doomed. Gila is one of a few friends that I feel I have a win- win type of relationship with.
When I got pregnant with the girls, I realized I would have very little time to myself. I decided that all the people in my life who I didn’t have a win win friendship with needed to be uprooted, that I finally had a good enough reason to do it. (Let's not delve for now into the obvious; if it wasn’t working for me then it was a good enough reason to end it).
Through it all my friend Gila has been a constant source of biting humor and staunch support. I read blogs all the time about the non-mom friends who don’t get it. I have a few of those myself. She is a non-mom friend who gets it and I feel lucky to have her in my life.